Jet slams into 3 homes in Indiana
SOUTH BEND, Ind. — A private jet apparently experiencing mechanical trouble crashed on Sunday in a northern Indiana neighborhood, hitting three homes and killing two people aboard the plane, authorities and witnesses said.
The Beechcraft Premier I twin-jet en route from Tulsa crashed near South Bend Regional Airport, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Roland Herwig said in Oklahoma City. Two of four people aboard the plane were killed, Herwig said.
South Bend Memorial Hospital spokeswoman Maggie Scroope said three people injured when the plane crashed were being treated there; one was in serious condition and two were in fair condition. Scoope did not know if they were on the plane or the ground. It was not clear whether anyone on the ground was killed or among the injured.
The plane was registered to 7700 Enterprises of Montana LLC in Helena, Mont. The company is owned by Wes Caves and does business as DigiCut Systems in Tulsa, Okla. It makes window film and paint overlay for automobiles.
A woman identifying herself as Caves' wife answered the phone at their home Sunday and said, “I think he's dead,” before hanging up.
In South Bend, Assistant Fire Chief John Corthier said the presence of jet fuel from the aircraft made the situation “very dangerous,” Corthier said. The plane was lodged inside a house.
“It's still a rescue operation,” Corthier said. Referring to one of the damaged houses, he said, “Because of the collapse in the house ... we have to shore up the house before we can enter.”
Part of the neighborhood southwest of the airport was evacuated. Buses transported up to 200 people to a nearby shelter, Red Cross volunteer Jackie Lincoln said.
Mike Daigle, executive director of the St. Joseph County Airport Authority, said the jet attempted a landing, went back up and maneuvered south to try another landing. Eight minutes later the airport realized the plane was not airborne.
Stan Klaybor, who lives across the street from the crash scene, said the jet clipped the top of one house, heavily damaged a second, and finally came to rest against a third. Neighbors did not know if a woman living in the most heavily damaged house was home at the time, and a young boy in the third house did not appear to be seriously injured, Klaybor said.
“Her little boy was in the kitchen and he got nicked here,” Klaybor said, pointing to his forehead.
His wife, Mary Jane, regularly watches planes approach the airport.
“I was looking out my picture window. The plane's coming, and I go, ‘Wait a minute,' and then, boom,” she said.
“This one was coming straight at my house. I went, ‘Huh?' and then there was a big crash, and all the insulation went flying,” she said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Obama: U.S. embassy in Havana marks ‘new chapter’ in Cuba ties
- Official: Fire at South Carolina black church wasn’t arson
- NSA resumes collection of phone data
- FDA review of OxyContin abuse-deterrent version put on hold by maker
- Fires at black churches stir worst fears amid relative calm
- Advocate pushes IRS on nonprofits’ tax forms
- Supreme Court to take up mandated dues for public employees unions in next term
- Counties defy same-sex marriage ruling
- New York prison chief, 11 employees put on leave in escape
- Enemies Israel, Hamas in quiet alliance to preserve cease-fire calm
- Vampire squids hint at long lives